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Online Journalism Awards Announced

USC/JOVRNALISM’s “Salton Sea” project announced as finalist


Last updated 9/5/2017 at 9:39am

The finalists for this year’s Online Journalism Awards, hosted by the Online News Association (ONA), were announced today, and USA TODAY NETWORK properties picked up multiple nominations.

Reno Gazette-Journal’s “Death Behind Bars” series, which shone a spotlight on a spike in deaths inside the Washoe County Jail, was named a finalist in the Knight Award for Public Service category. The series was broken into four parts, which told the stories of 13 people who died waiting for their day in court, and included an impressive and compelling video component. “Death Behind Bars” was led by reporter Anjeanette Damon and editor Brian Duggan.

A finalist in the Breaking News, Medium Newsroom category, Knoxville News Sentinel and USA TODAY NETWORK – Tennessee’s coverage of the Gatlinburg Fire was unlike any other. With support from reporters and photographers across Tennessee, the team was able to send vital information through push alerts, social posts, and stories from the front lines.

There were two NETWORK finalists in the category of Explanatory Reporting, Medium Newsrooms. Des Moines Register’s “Trans in Iowa: Fighting for Visibility” series was a chance to educate readers on the lives of transgender individuals through the stories of nearly 50 transgender Iowans. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s “What Happened to Us?” project provided the story of Columnist James Causey’s 1978 third-grade class and how the urban issues the community faced at the time – segregation, crime, drop-out rates, drug trade – played out decades later.

In addition to the above, USC/JOVRNALISM’s “Salton Sea” project, which was produced in partnership with The Desert Sun, was named a finalist in the Pro-Am Student Award category.

The Online Journalism Awards, which launched in May 2000, celebrate excellence in digital journalism and work to recognize media organizations that produce innovative content across the global. Winners will be announced this October at ONA’s Conference and Award Banquet in Washington DC.

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